Monday, October 1, 2012

The Mom Next Door Focus Group

I recently teamed up with to host a Mom Next Door Event at my house. We had a great time discussing what affects moms' purchasing decisions.  Thanks to Vicks, Stoneyfield Yogurt, and Family Fun magazine for providing grab bag goodies, and thanks, Jyl Pattee of for spearheading a great time!

I had several requests for the Veggie Chowder I served, so here you go:  (I forgot to take a picture, but this one looks close...thanks, Mom's Going Green!)

Veggie Chowder

4 potatoes, chopped
1/2-1 cup carrots, chopped
1/2-1 cup celery, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 can corn
4 cups water
4 chicken bouillon cubes
1-2 cups shredded cheddar
1 cup of half and half (I think it's one cup; I usually just use milk and I eyeball it, so it might be up to 2 cups)
1 tsp Greek Seasoning
ground red pepper

Bring water to a boil.  Add bouillon cubes and potatoes, carrots and celery.  Saute onion in a little bit of butter, then add to the soup with the corn.  When the veggies are tender, remove from heat and melt cheese in small handfuls, stirring constantly.  Add half and half (or milk) and season to taste.  Yum!!

A few things...

About 50% of the time, my cheese clumps.  I have been trying to figure out what I am doing wrong that makes this happen.  I know I have better luck when I use a wisk than a wooden spoon, and a friend told me that adding dairy BEFORE you try and melt cheese is the problem, so I melt the cheese first. It still clumps sometimes.  Any other tips?

Also, TRY THE GREEK SEASONING!!  This is the one I use, but I think there are others.  It really makes the soup!

And finally, I don't really like the heat from the red pepper flakes, but my husband can't get enough of it, so we season our own bowls {read:  I leave it out, and he puts what he wants in his own bowl}.

One of our family faves!

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